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Target Your Audience: 3 Ways to Win at Speaking in Public

This post is written for paid professional speakers but the tips below apply just as well to business presentations.

I’d bet that you could be a pretty good speaker.  You may even be one now.  Say your prayers, practice every day, and repeat motivational self-talk and you’ll get a standing-O every time you speak before a group, right?  Wrong!  The days of giving the same talk to audiences repeatedly and getting laudatory reviews are gone for all but the celebrity orator.  You and I, business presenter or professional speaker, will have to do what every other businessperson is learning the hard way to do in the global economy—customize.  That’s right, each talk must be specifically tailored to the group you’re speaking to. Read More…

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The Fab Five of Winning Business Presentations

winning business presentations, presentation skills, presentation tipsHave you ever been to a presentation for your industry, possibly at a seminar that couldn’t hold your attention no matter how hard you listened?  Of course you have.  Did you feel guilty because you knew that the information was important to you, but you didn’t retain a thing anyway?  End the guilt.  Forgive yourself.  It wasn’t your fault, but that of a boring, stiff presenter who was supposed to hold your interest in the subject.  As a member of the audience your job is to be courteous to the speaker and show proper respect, but you can’t breathe life into a dead presentation.  It is incumbent upon the presenter to make his material interesting and fun for the audience.  Read on to learn the top five simple presentations skills tips for fabulous business presentations. Read More…

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5 Powerpoint Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make in Your Presentation

presentation mistakes, presentation errors, powerpoint mistakesWARNING!  CAUTION!  BE AFRAID—BE VERY AFRAID!  There’s a trap out there lurking for the guy or gal who presents ideas, whether it’s the fledgling business presenter or the professional speaker, and it will kill your speech faster than pungi sticks take their toll on the unwary boar.  “What is this fierce trap?” you ask, trembling, not sure if you really want an answer.  It is one of the most  stealthy, sinister, and downright evil pieces of technology ever to sabotage imprudent presenters—Powerpoint (hereinafter referred to as AV or any computer presentation technology resembling Powerpoint). Read More…

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How to Give Technical Presentations without Boring Your Audience to Death!

You’re sitting in the audience at a medical practitioners conference. The speaker is droning on about the latest therapy for carpal tunnel syndrome and dumping data on you like you’re a Cray supercomputer. You don’t care because you’ve already tuned out and are drawing pictures of the back of the guy’s head who’s seated in front of you. You laugh at your caricature that makes the part in his hair look like the butt of a rhinoceros. Frustration sets in when his head flops down on the writing surface before him, robbing you of your muse and forcing you to finish the pastel from memory. Read More…

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Avoid Esoteritisms to Improve Professional Communication Skills

I’ll tell you something, readers, it’s funny.  The more successful we are in business today, the harder we are to understand.  If we don’t strengthen our professional communication skills and fast, we’ll become a society with the best communication tools the world has ever seen except no one will communicate effectively.  We begin to use esoteric, or industry specific, language when we communicate–industry jargon.  Euphemisms replace concrete concepts, and it seems that if one word is good, three or ten must be better.  Your challenge in business is to be a language self-surgeon, skillfully excising this cancerous discourse from your speech before you need chemo-therapy. Read More…

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